A Key Lesson for Success in Any Field

Lesson

“Wow – you are so passionate about what you do!  I can tell you’ve really found your calling in life!”

This is probably the best compliment I could ever receive. To know that I am living in such a way that my passion and love for what I do shines through, is truly gratifying.

I heard this statement from three different people this week! What I found interesting was that each conversation was an observation about a different type of my consulting work – in this case it was serving as the Interim President & CEO of a performing arts center, doing 1:1 leadership coaching, and speaking at a Writer’s Workshop on breaking through resistance.

Each time it was said, it surprised me because I wasn’t talking about what I do, I was doing the work; focused on the client, in the “zone,” and thinking about ways to address a problem. And yet, it resonated.

It got me thinking about you…my email community.

There is such a diverse group of people with whom I’ve been blessed to connect over the years. Arts leaders, non-profit board members and CEO’s, entrepreneurs, and stay at home moms! It’s really remarkable, and humbling when I think about all of the ways that you make a difference in the world.

Ever since I launched my business in January, I’ve been constantly refining my response to that infamous question we often hear: “So Kathryn, what do you do?”

From the start, I’ve made it my goal to create a business that would be driven by the impact I can make, and not just limited to the “who” I should work with and “what” services I should provide. What I’m realizing is that I am called to serve many types of clients for a reason.

So to help YOU build momentum, over the next few weeks, I’ll share some of the life and business lessons that come up from the different types of work I do with my clients.

This week, I’ve been back in Milwaukee working as a professional Interim CEO – leading my 8th organization through a strategic transition. It’s one of the most fulfilling types of consulting work that I do. Here is a key lesson that has surfaced that I believe is paramount for success in any field:

Create a unified, clear picture of what you really want, and empower those around you to be a part of making it happen.

Since I’m not on-site every day in Milwaukee, I must prioritize tasks and projects quickly. I’ve learned that it’s critical to take time in the beginning to test, hone and confirm a clear goal, and then find ways to ensure that we have the “buy in” from the team.

This creates confidence, creativity and momentum! In Milwaukee, brochures, invitations and letters are going out, thermometers are going up, community partners are being invited in…and all stakeholders are working together as we invite the community be a part of our mission-driven work!

So let me ask you…

Whether you’re in the field of Interim Management or not, do you have change-related challenges that you’d like to solve? Do you want to talk about ways that I might be able to support you in solving those challenges?

Let’s get on the phone and see how I can support you. Schedule a clarity call with me, and I promise you’ll walk away with a much clearer understanding of what YOUR best next strategic moves might be – for you and for your business or organization.

Schedule your time here.

Stay tuned for more “lessons from the field”, as next week I’ll share some key takeaways I’ve noticed from my 1:1 coaching work.

It’s an honor to serve you.

To your success,

Kathryn

How To Create Clarity In Our Busy Lives [Friday Leadership Tip]

planning

“You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in EACH moment”
– Henry David Thoreau

When things get busy and exciting like they are for me, it’s easy for the days and weeks to just FLY by, and sometimes that can create stress for us – especially if we feel like we’re not taking the time to plan and strategize.

Well I’ve come to understand that staying in the present as much as possible can actually make it feel like time is expanding! By focusing on the moment whenever we can, stress can often disappear, and clarity can appear in its place!

In some ways it feels counter-intuitive. Planning and setting our goals for the future are important for sure, but not at the expense of staying completely aware of what’s happening right NOW. Remember, NOW is all we really have.

All of that planning and strategizing about what we WANT is only useful to us if we are really clear and aware of what IS.

I am a planner, and very outcome-focused with both my 1:1 coaching clients and the purpose-driven organizations I consult with. I am “busier” than I have ever been in my life, and yet by setting intention to stay in the present (other than booking my travel!), time seems to have expanded and I find myself with more time than ever before to do good work, have impact and move with a song in my heart.

This weekend, when you reflect on what you did or didn’t get accomplished this week, and you start creating your “to do” list for next week, I challenge you to set an intention every day to stay in the present – and notice whether or not anything changes for you.

Of course, there are many tools and strategies on how to DO that, and I’m here to support YOU in your journey and help you strike that wonderful balance between charting your course to achieve what you really WANT, and staying focused on what’s right in front of you.

If you’d like to set up a complimentary clarity call with me to chat about how this can propel YOUR results, CLICK HERE to schedule your time.

Honestly, one of my favorite parts of the coaching process (and my consulting work) is that it holds up a “mirror” for us, so we can see what’s in front of our faces that we’d otherwise miss.  In my experience, that’s where the GOLD is!

Have a wonderful weekend, and remember to enjoy the moments!

With your success in mind,

Kathryn

[Friday Leadership Tip] Standing up for YOU

organizations

“Get up, Stand up!  Stand up for your rights! -Bob Marley

Last week as I sat in the audience of our presentation of GlobalFest, at the end of another great week onsite as Interim President & CEO, this iconic Bob Marley song took on new meaning for me. I’ve been humming it to myself ever since!

In my coaching practice, I am proud to work with clients who “stand up” every day for their mission-driven organizations. These are amazing people who passionately secure resources in order to help others, and ensure that the people they manage are empowered and working towards shared goals.

What’s interesting is that as humans, we “stand up” for social justice issues, we “stand up” for political leaders who we believe will move our country forward, we “stand up” for our children…and yet, there’s one thing we often don’t “stand up” for.  OURSELVES!

When we think about our options, about what we want, and what will bring us joy (and success), it’s interesting to see how often we tend to insert what we think is “practical” or “realistic” into the equation. We often are quick to deprive ourselves of the gift of thinking in possibility, and then standing up and fighting for that dream.

When we go on that job interview and don’t get a call back, we tell ourselves we “weren’t being realistic anyway.”

When we think about a career change, that little voice in our head tells us that “there’s no money in that,” and so we sell ourselves short and never try.

My message to you?  You have a CHOICE.

You get to choose the context and meaning that you place on things.

Why not create the context you need in order to love the aspects of what you are currently doing? When you are looking for a job, make sure you KNOW what your dream job looks like, and make sure you are positioning yourself in ways that will support that goal. Since you get to choose your context, choose an empowering context!

Take charge of your actions and challenge your “reality-based” assumptions, and claim what you WANT.

Get up!  Stand UP!  Stand up for YOU!

And as you do that, I am here to support you! Let’s get on the phone and create the strategies to move forward. If you’d like to chat with me,  click here to schedule a clarity call.
I’m standing up for you,

Kathryn

An Often Overlooked Key To Empowered Leadership

entrepreneurs

This month, as I work with clients, and meet new entrepreneurs and leaders in San Diego & Milwaukee, more themes continue to appear. One of those themes is that I really love being able to make a snowball one day and then smell the citrus trees blooming the next, but there’s also a professional theme emerging.

Asking for help is not always easy, especially when it applies directly to ourselves.

So many smart leaders seem hesitant to ask for help when they need it most because they attach some negative meaning to it, or view it as a sign of weakness. This could not be further from the truth. Let me illustrate with an example:

Imagine you are on your way to meet a potential donor or investor to ask for support for a project you are really excited about. Do you feel like a failure because you need to ask for help via financial support?  No, because you know that it asking for help is part of doing business.

When we ask for help in the context of working towards an exciting goal, we convey strength, intention, strategy… and people want to be a part of this success and purposeful effort!  And you know this already.

Now, imagine you are facing a challenge in your job. What is it?  A “difficult” board member, declining revenues, staff turnover, lack of work/life balance? – and you just don’t know what the best strategy would be, or feel a little overwhelmed, or frustrated, or triggered in an emotional way.

Do you ask for help?

Would asking for help undermine your positioning within the organization? Would you be perceived as weak, or lacking knowledge?   If you answered YES – I’d like you to consider the words of the late Jim Rohn, one of the world’s most respected modern day personal development pioneers and entrepreneurs:

“Asking is the beginning of receiving. Make sure you don’t go to the ocean with a teaspoon. At least take a bucket so the kids won’t laugh at you.”

If you don’t bring your bucket in life, you won’t be open to receiving the incredible gifts that people can give you. You might miss out on that ONE piece of wisdom you need to get to the next level on that key project.

The clients that come to me and ask for help are some of the smartest people I’ve ever met. They are not choosing to hire me because they are weak, or because I will have all the answers, but they understand that my experience, perspective, and approach can help them see something they might miss, or guide them in a direction that they didn’t even think about.

If you would like to have a conversation to help you identify your best next moves, I invite you to hop on the phone with me for one of my complimentary strategy calls.

CLICK HERE to schedule your call.

I also want you to know I am taking my own advice and asking for help more often, and I’m so grateful for the referrals that colleagues have been sending my way. I’ve met with some incredible leaders and entrepreneurs, and I couldn’t continue to grow and have the impact I envision without your help.

With your success in mind,

Kathryn

Working Really Hard, But Not Feeling Valued?

complimentary

All week I’ve been thinking about something that happened last Sunday.  My sister ran her first Marathon!!  Now, although you might be happy for her, what does this have to do with YOU? In my 1:1 conversations with smart leaders about their careers, and about the organizations they are leading, themes seem to percolate up. […]

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Do you know what you want? Really want?

charge

In January I hosted a  “Spark Call” – a 35 minute tele-class packed with content called 3 Steps to Take Charge and Immediately Increase Your Impact. CLICK HERE to listen to the recording. Here’s what you’ll learn: How to stop being your own worst critic, and second guessing your decisions so you can lead with confidence. How […]

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The key to overcoming any setback

accomplish

How was your week?!  Did you accomplish what you set out to?  Did your week unfold as you were expecting?  Were there surprises or set-backs?  Of course!! The question is:  How did you choose to react when those setbacks happened? (think, behave, feel)? With so much we want to do each day, how do we keep on track?  How do we take […]

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How to Create Goals That You’ll Actually Achieve!

goals

January is a great time to reflect on the past and set a course for the future.   Some of us are setting out to create Big Changes, and some of us are simply striving to successfully manage the challenges and opportunities that each day of the New Year will bring… without burning out! As you […]

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Thank you James Chute

goals

A twenty-fifth work Anniversary is a reason to celebrate – and those professionals who reach this important milestone are in a very distinguished group!  As our San Diego arts & culture community continues to grow and thrive, it’s in no small part due to this special (and growing) group of veteran leaders who have chosen […]

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Staff need THIS during a leadership transition

leader

Arts and culture organizations have dedicated boards and employees who are ready to do whatever it takes to ensure the mission of their organization is achieved, especially in times of need. During a leadership transition, for example, the board will create a plan to find the organization’s next leader. This clear understanding of the board’s […]

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